Calibres de France
The Calibres de France ("French calibers") was a system of standardization of cannons in France, established by King Francis I of France from about 1525. The objective was to simplify and codify cannonry, in order to facilitate production. On 26 September 1526, Francis I wrote about the artillerye de mon calibre ("Artillery of my caliber"), and an even earlier mention is known from 1512. The Calibres de France were formalized in an ordinance of 1552.
Six standard sizes were defined: the cannon (Canon), the "grand" culverin (Grande couleuvrine), the "bastard" culverin (Couleuvrine bâtarde), the "middle" culverin (Couleuvrine moyenne), the Falconet (Faucon), and the falconeer (Fauconneau).
The 6-guns Calibres de France system was still in place at the time of Louis XIII, which was later developed to an 18-guns system.
"Grande couleuvrine" of Francis I with Salamander emblem and inscription in Arabic, Siege of Rhodes (1522).
Bronze culverin of Francis I.
- La Grande Maîtresse, nef de François Ier: recherches et documents d'archives by Max Guérout p.231
- L'histoire mémorable du siège et de la famine de Sancerre (1573) by Jean de Léry, Géralde Nakam p.70
- Dictionnaire Des Institutions De La France Aux Dix-Septieme Et Dix-Huitieme Siècles by Marcel Marion p.26